Outstanding TCMS spellers advance to regional spelling bee


PRUNTYTOWN—Each year, students around the nation put their knowledge of phonics to the test, during annual spelling bees.

In 1925, the first champion was named for the National Spelling Bee, and since that time, students have competed at school, district, county, regional and state levels in the hopes of moving on to the Scripps National Spelling Bee.

On Wednesday, February 12, students at Taylor County Middle School took to the stage to make a name for themselves in spelling, during the Taylor County Spelling Bee.

Earlier in the fall, youths competed in their classroom spelling bees, and after the scores were tallied, 30 students had qualified to move on to the county-level competition.

Several rounds and numerous words later, six students were named to advance on to the Regional Spelling Bee, which will take place on Saturday, March 21, at Fairmont State University.

After moving his way up through the ranks and knocking off his competitors, eighth grader Justin Gainer was named as this year’s county spelling bee winner, after correctly spelling the word “abundance” in the final round.

Gainer will advance to represent Taylor County during the regional competition. Joining him will be second-place winner Sydney Chen, seventh grade; third-place winner Cole Goldizen, eight grade; sixth grader Maurriska Francisco who took home fourth-place and fifth grade’s Gevevieve White in fifth-place.

Additionally, seventh grader Zarek Thompson will move on as an alternate for the regional competition.

Coordinator Lindsay Stepanek shared that this year’s event would not have been such a success without the support of the students’ family and friends.

“All of the students worked very hard at both the class and county levels, and I am very proud of them,” Stepanek shared. “I can’t wait to see how they do at regionals!”

Congratulations to this year’s Taylor County Spelling Bee Champion Gainer, as well as the others who will go on to represent Taylor County in the next event!

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